BALTIMORE, M.D. – Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake held an emotionally charged press conference this morning in which she apologized to the residents of Baltimore, and the world, for referring to the rioters who, on Monday night, torched 144 vehicles and burned down fifteen buildings, as “thugs.”
Flanked by members of the Crips, a community-based organization that preaches non-violence, Rawlings-Blake said, “We don’t have thugs in Baltimore.” Last night, however, there were six shootings within the span of an hour and, so far this year, there have been 69 homicides. All of which, by Rawlings-Blake’s estimate, were committed by “kids that [were] acting out.”
The mayor went on to announce that she has issued a full pardon for the 235 people, including 32 juveniles, who were arrested during the riots. The aftermath left dozens of businesses looted and destroyed, resulting in millions of dollars in property damage. Additionally, fifteen police officers were hospitalized, with some in critical condition. “It was all a big misunderstanding,” Mayor Rawlings-Blake said.
Furthermore, the mayor apologized to the entire state of Maryland and the Governor’s Office for wasting taxpayer money and resources by requesting a National Guard presence in Baltimore, which she described as “a blissful Utopian metropolis.” Towards the end of the press conference, without directly taking responsibility, Mayor Rawlings-Blake apologized for the attacks on September 11, 2001 in Washington and New York which left 3,000 Americans dead and resulted in two, decade-long wars.
At one point, an aide approached Rawlings-Blake and whispered something in her ear, perhaps suggesting a good stopping point. The mayor waved him off before apologizing for the interruption and begging the people of Baltimore for forgiveness for the Rwandan genocide. Her exact role in the bloody massacre was unclear because, at that moment, audio was lost and an unidentified man announced the end of the press conference due to unforeseen microphone issues.